It’s been a crazy-busy month (or four). I started the process of e-publishing DEVIL’S OVEN (it’s here and here, btw!) way back in November, and, even as late as my most recent blog post, I was sure I would have it–as well as my backlist–up and available the first week in March. Three weeks ago.
Who knew there was so much detail work involved? I had imagined I would simply pop new covers on my first two novels and they would magically transport themselves to Amazon and BN, where my winsome, wonderful readers would eagerly e-queue to buy them. Just kidding–mostly. The covers were the fun part. My biggest challenge was dealing with the novel manuscripts themselves. Don’t ask me why, but I never thought I would need the final manuscript docs for ISABELLA MOON and CALLING MR. LONELY HEARTS once I sent them off to Ballantine five and four years ago, respectively. I’m sure they’re on an old hard drive in some landfill. I eventually had to have hardcover versions of both novels professionally scanned.
I don’t know if you’ve ever worked with a scanned document, but even if you pay for a good scan, it comes out badly messed up. ISABELLA MOON took me weeks to fix. CALLING MR. LONELY HEARTS is still here on my desktop, staring at me (stop that!), waiting for me to tame it. Basically, I have to be my own proofreader and copyeditor for the scans, prep them as Word .docs for Brett Battles (who, in addition to being a terrific writer, does a helluva formatting job for Kindle and epub docs), and get them uploaded.
Amazon has lots of questions to answer before one can upload books, BN even more. Things are rather more complicated than they might be because Pinckney (my genius writer-guy husband) and I are publishing and selling our work through Gallowstree Press (the site is not quite ready, but the logo, by The Terrible Two Studio, is very spiffy). Many friends and readers are asking for paper versions of the books, too, so I’m trying to get that set up with Lightning Source. Lots and lots of paperwork. And did I mention that each version of each book must have a unique ISBN number? Last, but certainly not least, is my personal website, which hasn’t quite caught up with the big changes, yet. Okay. That’s not really the last bit. There’s tons more, but I don’t want to discourage anyone who might be considering publishing their own work.
This has been a blast. A complicated blast, yes, but still a lot of fun.
Next up: I’m uploading ISABELLA MOON today! It should be available–again, finally, as an ebook–within hours.
After that: Gallowstree Press will soon go live. PDFs (will load in pretty much any ereader) of all three of my novels will be available there for purchase. I’m converting individual short stories as well.
Simultaneously: Molding CALLING MR. LONELY HEARTS into a recognizable, readable shape.
In the background: Buying advertising. Begging for reviews of DEVIL’S OVEN (which is priced at a very reasonable $3.99, I might add). Writing. (BLISS HOUSE is on the way.)
Several of my writer friends are attempting to mobilize their fan bases to fund their upcoming writing projects. Kickstarter.com is one way. Some have set sales goals for their existing books, asking readers to vote with their wallets for the series they want to see continue. These methods are way too complicated for me. Mobilize my fan base? Here I go:
Hi, fans! I love you! I’m crazy about you! Love my work, love me!
That sounds silly, doesn’t it? I promise that it’s sincere. I love all readers and love to write for you. I’m just pitiful at getting newsletters out there–but I’m working on that.
In the mean time, here’s the cover for CALLING MR. LONELY HEARTS, by the exceptional J.T. Lindroos. It’s so beautifully creepy, don’t you think?
***Hey, I should mention that I’m guest blogging about decapitation, killing animals in fiction, and other sensitive subjects at The Kill Zone today. The blog has great discussions about what’s in and on the minds of mystery/thriller writers.